From the Chicago Tribune:
Plenty of movies have been made about Chicago. Plenty of movies have been shot on Chicago's streets. But the city itself has never been a center of international studio filmmaking, except for one brief golden age that lasted only a decade. That single 10-year span commenced in the summer of 1907, when Essanay Studios was formed to enter the new business of making movies. During those years, Chicago had a studio that was the Disney or Warner Brothers of its day.
Essanay boasted among its contract players the world's number one box-office star (Charlie Chaplin), a great matinee idol (Francis X. Bushman), a glamor queen (Gloria Swanson), and the dean of cowboy stars (studio co-founder Gilbert "Bronco Billy" Anderson). The studio was located in the 1300 block of West Argyle Street in the city's Uptown neighborhood...
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Thanks to Dave S. for the head's up on this story.